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BULLETIN 173, FALL 1985 US ISSN 0040-6406 


Introduction - 

The extract below has been taken from the Rec- 
ords of the Concord Farmers Club for the year 1859- 
1860. It is the "minutes" of a discussion which 
followed an essay on "Forest Trees" read to the 
Club on April 12, 1860 by Charles L. Heywood. Five 
months and eight days after this date Henry D. 
Thoreau delivered his address, "The Succession of 
Forest Trees", at the annual Fair of the Middlesex 
Agricultural Society in Concord. Since so many of 
the Farmers Club's questions are answered in 
Thoreau' s lecture, it seems obvious there is a re- 
lation between the two. The Concord Farmers Club 
was one of several local groups in Middlesex County 
during the mid-nineteenth century. It met weekly 
during the winter season - from early November 
through April. At each meeting an essay on an 
agricultural subject waa read» by one of the members 
and a discussion of the subject followed, led off 
by four "leaders". The leaders of the discussion 
on the evening of April 12 were: Jacob B. Farmer, 
Joseph D. Brown, John F. Wood, and Joshua Warren 
Brown. It is mainly the remarks of these men - and 
of the speaker - which were recorded. (Unfortunate- 
ly, the Secretary was not required to list the 
names of everyone present at these meetings - 
although a few years later he was required to do so.) 

The first meeting in the Club's season was 
usually a business meeting. Officers were elected 
for the incoming year, and a committee was appoint- 
ed to assist the President in selecting the sub- 
jects to be discussed and in assigning speakers to 
them. For the 1859-60 season the officers were: 
Nathan Henry Warren, President ; A.H. Wheeler, Vice 
President; Elijah Wood, Jr., Treasurer; and Dr. 
Joseph Reynolds, Secretary . Two of these men were 
serving also as officials for the Middlesex Agri- 
cultural Society: Joseph Reynolds was Secretary of 
the Society, and Elijah Wood was a long-standing 
member of the Board of Trustees, representing the 
Town of Concord. The officers of the Club were also 
its 1859-60 speech committee (although this was not 
the usual course of events). 

As for Charles L. Heywood, the speaker at the 
April 12, 1860 meeting, he is reported to have been 
a member of the family which owned four pieces of 
property in the environs of Walden Pond - one of 
them being "Heywood' s Meadow" (site of the affair 
of the mud-turtle and the pout) on the WSW side of 
Walden close to the Lincoln line, and another being 
a woodlot on the ESE corner bordering directly on 
the Pond. By profession, Mr. Heywood was a "rail- 
road man", and is further reputed to have been an 
"influential" one in his company. 2 His nomination 
in November of 1858 coincided with a time when the 
local farmers were trying to obtain lower rates for 

The Thoreau Society, Inc., is an infor- 
mal gathering of students and admirers of 
Henry David Thoreau. Frederick Wagner, 
President; Mary Anderson, Treasurer; and 
Walter Harding, Secretary. Address communi- 
cations to the Secretary at State University 
College, Geneseo, N.Y. 14454. Dues, $10 a 
year; Friend, $15 Family, $25; and Life 
Membership, $500. Dues should be sent to 
The Thoreau Society, 156 Belknap St., Con- 
cord, Mass. 01742, where the society 
maintains The Thoreau Lyceum 

their daily milk shipments into the city. More 
than ten years after this April 1860 evening, 
Minot Pratt wrote the following: 

"The chestnut trees of Concord do not at 
present appear to have a fair opportunity 
to show what they can do if left to old 
age. The railroad call for sleepers has 
had the singular effect of waking up the 
owners of woodlots to search for all that 
are of sufficient size, and the axe lieth 
at the root of those which have not already 
fallen. The fruit of these would be valu- 
able if they could be left until large 
size, and the boys would understand that 
the owner as properly owns the fruit of 
his chestnut grove as of his apple orchard 
. . ." (March 6, 1873, CFC Records) 
Since it is likely that the conditions which 
caused Minot to write as he did in 1873 were not 
so different from what they had been a decade or 
so earlier, it seems possible to probable that 
Charles Heywood asked permission to address the 
members of the Club on the subject of Forest Trees 
at this final meeting of their 1859-60 season. 3 

Should future research prove this to have been 
the case, it was not to be the only occasion dur- 
ing this period in its history when the Farmers 
Club accommodated a distinguished non-agricultural 
member. The following year, an additional meeting 
was called at the end of the official season in 
order that the Superintendent of Schools, Bronson 
Alcott, might read an essay - which he called 
"The Garden". 

Mr. Heywood remained in the Club one more year 
after his talk to the farmers. But he did not read 
another essay, and after the 1860-61 season his 
name no longer appears on the membership lists 
in the Club Records. 

In its eight years of existence prior to April 
12, 1860, the Concord Farmers Club had never 
accorded an evening to the discussion of Forest 
Trees (or Woodlands). Trees had been discussed 
from the standpoint of fruit-bearers or in rela- 
tion to their ornamental and protective charac- 
teristics (as in plantings around homes, or culti- 
vated fields or pastures to protect crops or live- 
stock from excessive weather conditions). In the 
decade following Mr. Heywood ' s essay, however, 
sessions on Forest Trees were scheduled nearly 
every year, or at the least, every other year.^ 

Twenty-one essays were written and read before 
the Farmers Club during the 1859 season. Thirteen 
were copied in the Record book (as was the custom); 
two others were printed later in the New England 
Farmer; and another may have retained by its author 

to be used as a draft for a committee report which 
appeared in the 1860 Transactions of the Middlesex 
Agricultural Society. Of the five essays which re- 
main missing, one - of course- is Charles L. Hey- 
wood's piece on "Forest Trees". 

The Minutes - 

April 12 (1860). Club met at the home of C.L. 

Voted to have the supper on the 19th unless some- 
thing important should prevent, in which case each 
member will be notified of the time. 

An Essay on Forest Trees was read by Mr. Heywood 
(Charles L. ) 

J.B. Farmer (Jacob B.) said we need more light 
on the subject. We need more accurate knowledge of 
trees. We can hardly describe a tree were we to or- 
der it from abroad. He has recently examined sever- 
al species of pines. The Scotch pine has two leaves 
in each sheath. The Pitch pine 3. The White five. 
The Norwegian he thinks 4. 

There are several kinds of oak, all of which 
differ in the shape of their berries. We have three 
kinds of maple, the Sugar, the White and the red. 
He thinks each tree feeds on different elements in 
the soil. We find a succession of different trees 
grow on the same soil. If we cut off pines, oaks 
will come up. If we cut off oaks, pines will follow 
on some soils, oaks will come up after oaks. Such 
soils have some mineral element that suits the oak. 
When this is exhausted, another kind will come. The 
White pine, the Chestnut, and the birch grow so 
fast, that they are the most profitable trees to 
raise. The larch grows in low grounds, 

J.D. Brown (Joseph D.) said he had but little 
accurate knowledge about trees. On a piece of land 
he owns, there had been three successive crops of 
oaks . Pine is followed by oak, but oak land will 
bring up oaks. He does not think much of pruning 
forest trees. Thinning will not benefit those which 
remain. On suitable land it would be advisable to 
set forest trees, but not on tillage land. 

Mr. Heywood asked when he would cut wood if he 
wished the sprouts to grow. He replied, In the 
winter. He has cut only in the winter. Land that he 
cut in winter has come up, and produced 25 cords 
per acre in 25 years . 

Mr. Warren (Nathan Henry) said he had noticed 
the difference in sprouts, when the wood was cut in 
November, and in March. When cut in March there 
would be 5 times as many sprouts. Mr. Jones (Hiram 
W.) had cut in June, and there were scarcely any 
sprouts . 

The Pres. (Nathan Henry Warren) thinks that trees 
cut in summer do not generally start much. 

Mr. Jones has cut Alders in August, not one in a 
hundred started. 

John F. Wood did not think there was much land 
in Concord which could be profitably set out with 
forest trees, except for shade. Sprouts are apt to 
grow too thick. If only one or two were left to 
grow, they might grow larger. The sprouts might be 
cut when large enough for hoop poles. This would 
pay - and the benefit to those left, would pay for 
the labor. As many as 8 or 10 Chestnut sprouts start 
from a stump. All but 2 or three die. It has been 
said that roots will run as far as the height of 
the trees. Some conversation ensued about the age 
of trees. 

J.W. Brown (Joshua Warren) does not think it 
would pay to set out trees. In the rocky pastures, 
they grow fast enough, if left alone. He has mowed 

brush many years in succession but they continued 
to grow. In one such lot, a good crop is now grow- 
ing. It is best to cut off the wood when the trees 
are three or four inches through. Then they would 
come up evenly. 

C.L. Heywood said if you keep such land, say 10 
acres for pasture, and mow the brush, and another 
10 acres grow to wood, which will be the most 
profitable. In 30 years you will have 25 cords of 
wood to the acre, worth $3 per cord standing. The 
pasture will not be worth more than enough to pay 
for mowing the brush. 

Mr. Brown on sandy land would let pitch pines 
grow. J.B. Brown (James B.) asked if pitch pine 
was the best answer. It was the best wood. C.L. 
Heywood said a tree standing alone will yield much 
seed. But the land will be some years in getting 
seeded. It was better to plant it all at one time, 
which might be done for $6 per acre. Then it 
would grow even. 

E. Wood Jr. (Elijah) thinks there are more acres 
growing to wood in> Concord than there were 80 years 

J. B. Farmer thinks there are twice as many 
acres grown or growing to wood than there were 
40 years ago. 

E. Wood's grandfather had seen 40 acres of rye 
growing where there are now board logs. 

Mr. Heywood had been buying wood for 12 years. 
Wood would be no higher. There are more acres 
growing by one 4th than 10 years ago. 

We now burn coal. Have fuel saving stoves. 12 
years ago, fuel was 50 cents higher than now. He 
has purchased wood in Boston for $3.25 the past 
year. On the Peterboro road for $3.12. On the Main 
road $4. Last year cheaper than ever. If there were 
2 or 3 pencil factories in town, it would pay to 
raise pines. Where shall the manufacturers go to 
get timber . Sapling pines are more than hard wood. 
In Townsend pine was worth $4 per cord. One cord 
and a half will grow per acre in a year, on land 
worth $5. Poor land will grow pines rapidly. It 
will grow hard wood 2 or 3 inches thick. When it 
stops growing the land cannot carry it further. 
Poor land worth $5 net(s) more than our lands 
worth $15 or ($)20. 

E. Wood referred to a piece of land on which the 
owner gave away the wood for cutting. It was plowed 
and planted to potatoes. Brush was mowed. It yield- 
ed but little pasturage. It was then left to grow 
up to wood, and is now worth $100 per acre. 

The President spoke of a lot in Weymouth which 
a friend of his purchased for pasture. There were 
some pines on it. They were left standing. This 
was 50 years ago. His friend has been offered $400 
per acre . 

A.H. Wheeler (Abiel H.) said the frost killed 
the young oaks in the valleys on Fairhaven Hill. 
Mr. Heywood said stock the land with pines, and 
then set oaks. The pines will protect them from 
frost,. When the oaks are large enough to endure 
the frost, cut the pines. They will pay well for 
cutting. Chestnuts and some other trees will do 
as well as pines to protect the young oaks. 

Adjourned. This is the last meeting for the 
season. The meetings have been well attended, and 
the interest sustained through the winter as well 
or better than in any previous year. The discus- 
sions have been animated, and many able essays 
have been read. Several new members have joined the 
Club. Joseph Reynolds, Secretary 

Notes - 

1. The purpose of these local groups was pri- 
marily "educational". By pooling their ideas and 
their experience, the members of the Clubs sought 
to establish more scientific methods in the prac- 
tice of their vocation. Frequently these men were 
among the most enlightened farmers in their commun- 
ities, and the Concord Club, during the '60s and 
'70s, included some very talented people. It might 
be stated that, on the whole, the smaller groups 
were more effective in disseminating a genuine 
knowledge of agriculture than the larger county 
societies which preceded them in formation. 

2. This assessment of Mr.Heywood's professional 
status is confirmed by a news item about the 
annual dinner held by the Club, which appeared in 
the June, 1860 issue of the New England Farmer . 

The name of C.L. Heywood is printed among the 
names of notables who rose at the end of the meal 
to deliver "a few remarks" to the guests. I am in- 
debted to Marcia Moss and Thomas Blanding for this 

3. The subject of "Forest Trees" was on the 
original program as scheduled by the speech commit- 
tee at the beginning of the season. That is, it 
was not a last-minute addition to the schedule, nor 
a substitute for another subject, as sometimes 
happened . 

4. Should the question arise as to whether a 
lecture on "Forest Trees' would have been scheduled 
had not Heywood desired to address the Club, it 

is the opinion of this writer that it would have 
been, for the reason that conditions with respect 
to harves table wood throughout the county and the 
state at this time were such that consideration 
of the subject by the farmers had become mandatory. 
It is also the opinion of this writer that neither 
Mr. Heywood' s possible desire for lumber for his 
railroad, nor the ignorance of both Heywood and 
the farmers about trees were strong enough reasons 
to compel the Society to requisition a "Succession 
of Forest Trees" from Henry D. Thoreau unless these 
other "conditions" had been in existence. 


by Stephen A. Kenney 
Editor's note: In 1984 Stephen A. Kenney of Ken- 
more, New York, a graduate student in English at 
SUNY Buffalo who is doing his diss-ertaion on 
Thoreau, planted wildflowers on his front lawn and 
upon complaint of some of his neighbors, was found 
guilty of "creating a public hazard." When he re- 
fused to cut them down, a judge imposed a fine of 
fifty dollars a day. The case is on appeal. ] 

One evening early last fall, as I was walking 
down the tree-lined suburban street on which I live, 
I could hear up ahead an odd high-pitched noise, 
one I could not immediately identify. The evening 
was rather late, the traffic had died down, and 
only the low grumbling of distant trucks, factories, 
and city streets was audible, serving as a contrast- 
ing background to those sharp sounds and making 
them seem foreign, somehow out of place. As I near- 
ed my front yard, I realized the strange tones 
were issuing from there; and I smiled to myself in 
the streetlit semi-darkness, recognizing the cheer- 
ful singing of a choir of crickets. For the first 
time, it dawned on me that, save for the occasion- 
al forlorn chirrup of a solitary individual, I 
rarely ever hear crickets anymore. I stood stock 
still for a few moments and let my ears drink in 

the music that had seemed eternal in my rural 
childhood. I closed my eyes and imagined that 
these insects were celebrating this small oasis of 
tangled grasses and wildflowers, and praising the 
Great Mystery which had so bountifully provided 
for them. The knotty tension in my muscles — put 
there by months of chaotic disruption in my life: 
the recently lost court battle, the swirling media 
circus,, the wrenching Kafkaesque scenes — began 
to loosen, and I felt, if only for a fleeting in- 
stant, that it had all been worth it; the crickets 
at least, understood. 

Moments such as that are, unfortunately, all 
too rare for me these days, and with the appeal 
trial scheduled for June, I see even fewer of 
them in the near future. The absolute irony is 
that I originally moved to this neighborhood be- 
cause I knew that my decision to go back to school 
required I find a more peaceful setting than the 
very distracting urban one in which I was then 
living. Although, I certainly would've preferred 
a rural residence, money, distance, and availabili- 
ty made this suburban one a happy medium; or so I 
had hoped. The understanding landlords gave me 
carte blanche to make myself entirely at home; the 
neighbors, as I've come to learn only too well, 
want me to make my home elsewhere. What very few 
of them seem to understand is that I'm not fignting 
so much simply for my own home as I am for every- 
one's — including the crickets', for if they 
can't survive, we certainly won't either. The a- 
stounding lack of progress in understanding this 
very simple fact does not bode well for our sur-^- 
vival; sadly though, this has been said.So many 
times before and so many times has gone unheeded. 

As a fellow "student and admirer of Henry David 
Thoreau," I share with you a desire to point out 
the relevance, the necessity , of understanding the 
wisdom of his work and of seeing our world through 
his eyes. As we have all seen, however, too often 
Thoreau is reduced to a bumper-sticker aphorism, 
made incomprehensible by esoteric criticism, or 
given semi-divine status by ardent devotees. Per- 
haps one of the most disappointing things about my 
"celebrated lawn trial" is the way I'm depicted as 
some sort of side-show oddity, an overzealous "dis- 
ciple of Thoreau' s. They seem to say, "isn't this 
all very quaint. Now back to the serious news." 
(Although I do admit I was pleased with the sober 
treatment Dan Rather gave the story, complete with 
an appropriate quotation from "Civil Disobedience.") 
Nevertheless, for now, I think we should at least 
feel some satisfaction at having Thoreau' s name 
mentioned at all. 

One of the major reasons I went to graduate 
school was my deep longing to immerse myself in a 
systematic study of Thoreau' s works and to figure 
out a way to make his thoughts more accessible and 
more meaningful to an audience much larger than 
the small group of us already concerned. I was 
looking for something important to say about his 
life's work, something that would crystalize his 
philosophy and make it pertinent to everyone's 
life. If people would not recognize the clarion of 
Chanticleer, I wanted to build a clanging alarm 
clock. To be honest, though, when I scattered the 
first handful of wildflower seeds in my front yard, 
I was not thinking of Thoreau; I was merely re- 
sponding to my own environmental impulse. Yet I 
quickly discovered that planting my flowers and 
standing firmly by my right to do so in the face 

of legal threats by "the desperate party" was it- 
self a profound study of Thoreau; although uninten- 
tional, my experience has, 1 believe, offered a 
depth to my appreciation of his words that no 
amount of time in the library could have. And this 
summer, when I can once again listen to the chorus 
of crickets surrounded by silent lawns, I'll know 
that, at least for me , dawn is only hours away. 


PUBLIC RELATIONS: Margaret Brace, Lillian 
Files, Laurie Ledeen (Chairperson), Patience 

PUBLICATIONS: Thomas Blanding*, Malcolm 
Ferguson, Walter Harding*, Linck Johnson, John 
McAleer, Anne R. McGrath, Joel Myerson (chair- 
person) • 


The Thoreau Society will, as usual, spon- 
sor a winter meeting at the annual convention 
of the Modern Language Association, to be 
held this year in Chicago just after Christ- 
mas. It will feature papers on "Teaching 
Walden " by Linck Johnson, Richard Lebeaux, 
Robert Richardson, and Timothy Trask, and 
chaired by Michael Meyer and Joel Myerson. 
Date and place will be announced in the 
catalog of the convention. 



BY Michael Meyer 

The Thoreau Society needs financial sssistance. 
Since 1983 the Society has found it necessary to 
draw upon funds from its modest endowment in ord- 
er to meet its operating expenses. Twenty-eight 
dollars and twelve and one half cents simply doesn't 
go as far as it once did. The Society's activities 
are thriving but so are its costs. Several steps 
have been taken to avoid future deficits, including 
a new membership drive, an increased fee for lyceum 
admissions, and reduced costs for printing the 
the Society has established a Development Committee 
that will seek grants and donations. 

All members of the society are urged to think 
creatively about how we can raise money from corp- 
orations or other organizations that might be will- 
ing to help support various Lyceum, publications, 
and archives programs. If you have any ideas, leads, 
or contacts concerning potential contributors, 
please describe tham and inform Robert Galvin 
(chairperson of the new Development Committee: % 
Gage, Tucker & vom Baur, One Boston Place, Boston, 
Mass. 02108). And of course, individual amounts 
(perhaps supplemented by corporate employers who 
have matching programs) are as welcomed as they 
are sorely needed. Checks should be made payable 
to the Thoreau Society, 156 Belknap Street, Concord, 
Mass. 01742. Whatever help you can provide will be 
richly appreciated. 


President Frederick Wagner announces the 
appointment of the following committees of 
the society for 1985-1986. The president is 
ex officio a member of each committee. Other 
ex officio members are marked with an aster- 

ARCHIVES: Thomas Blanding, Malcolm Ferguson 
(vice chairperson), Dana McLean Greeley 
(chairperson), Walter Harding, Anne R. Mc- 
Grath*, Michael Meyer, Marcia Moss*, Edmund 
Schofield, Jacgueline Tidman. 

DEVELOPMENT: Mary Anderson*, Raymond R. 
Borst, John Clymer*, Robert Galvin (chair- 
person), Walter Harding*, Barbara Winstanley, 
Barbara Wojtusik, Ann H. Zwinger. 

EXECUTIVE: Mary Anderson*, John Clymer 
(chairperson), Dana McLean Greeley, Walter 
Harding*, Laurie Ledeen, Joel Myerson, Marian 
Wheeler, Robert Galvin, chairperson of Lyceum 

FINANCE: Mary Anderson* (chairperson), John 
Clymer*, Mary McClintock, Eric Parkman Smith. Kidder, Rushworth. "Rushworth Kidder 

LYCEUM: chair and members now being select- Reads Thoreau." CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONI- 
ed. TOR. Aug. 5, 1985. 

PROGRAM: Lillian Files, Persis Green, Lind- Lebeaux, Richard. THOREAU'S SEASONS. Re- 
a Henning, Patience MacPherson, Lucille Need- view: NEW ENGLAND QUARTERLY. March, 1985 

ham, Marilyn Nicoson, Joan Nolan, Eugene Walk- 
er, Mary Walker, Marian Wheeler (chairperson), 
Lawrence Whipple. 

Abbott, P. "Henry David Thoreau, the 
State of Nature, and the Redemption of 
Liberalism." JOURNAL OF POLITICS, 47 
(Feb. 1985), 182-208. 

Beeching, Paul. "Thoreau' s Mountain and 
19, 1985. Mount Monadnock. 

Bly, William. "Thoreau at Walden." in 
LAND OF THE LIVING. Broken Arrow, Okla : 
Bly, 1985. pp. 4-5. Poem. 

. "Thoreau* s Cabin." in LAND OF THE 

LIVING. p. 13. Poem. 

LOGICAL PORTRAIT. Broken Arrow, Okla.: 
Bly (1026 West Boston Ave., 74012), 1985. 

Bridgman, Richard. DARK THOREAU. Review: 

Browne, Mark. "Thoreau Scholars Hail Dis- 
covery of Artifacts." CONCORD JOURNAL. 
Aug. 15, 1985. Discovery of Thoreau 's 
flute book. 

Christenson, Andrew. "The Identification 
and Study of Indian Shell Middens in 
Eastern North America: 1643-1861." NORTH 
AMERICAN ARCHAEOLOGIST, 6 (1985), 227-243 
Pays tribute to Thoreau' s early studies 
in the field. 

Currier, Ann-Mary. "Where Thoreau Roamed." 
1985. Visiting Walden Pond. 

Gross, Robert A. "The Great Bean Field 
Hoax: Thoreau and the Agricultural Re- 
formers." VIRGINIA QUAR. REV., 61 (Sum- 
mer, 1985), 483-496. A real delight. 
Don't miss it. 

1985. 61pp. A reprint. 

Howarth, William. THE BOOK OF CONCORD. 
Winter, 1985. 

Leokum, Arkady. "Thoreau Idea Was to Keep 
Life Simple." BATAVIA [N.Y.] NEWS. June 
15, 1985. 

Magill, Frank N. "Henry David Thoreau" in 
V. New York: Harper, 1970. pp. 37-56. 

Ma lion, Thomas. A BOOK OF ONE'S OWN. New 
York: Ticknor & Fields, 1984. Many com- 
ments on Thoreau as journalizer. 

Miller, Linda. "A Teacher Returns Renewed" 
NEW YORK TIMES. Sept. 8, 1985. On 
studying Thoreau in Concord. 

Nibbelink, H. "Thoreau and Wendell Berry: 
Bachelor and Husband of Nature." SOUTH 

ATLANTIC QUARTERLY, 84 (Spring, 1985), 

Pokrovsky, Nikita. "Thoreau in Russia" 
SOVIET LIFE, 9 (Sept. 1985), 57. Many 
new details about Tolstoi's interest 
in Thoreau . 

Robinson, Kenneth A. THOREAU AND THE WILD 
APPETITE. New York: AMS Press, 1985, 
29pp. A reprint. 

Roof, Christopher. "Yours Coneordially. " 
MIDDLESEX NEWS. Sept. 6, 1985. 

Schneider, Richard. "Thoreau and Nine- 
teenth Century American Landscape Paint- 
ing. ESQ, 31 (1985), 67-88. 

Stull, W.L. "Action from Principle: Tho- 
reau 's Transcendental Economics." ENG- 
LISH LANG. NOTES, 22 (Dec. 1984), 58-62. 

Taylor, C.A. "Authorship without Authori- 
ity: Walden, Kierkegaard and the Experi- 
ment in Points of View." in R.Schleifer 
Norman: Univ. of Okla, 1984. pp. 164-182. 

Teele, John W. , ed. THE MEETING HOUSE ON 
First Parish, 1985. 361pp. Many men- 
tions of Thoreau and his family. 

Thoreau, Henry D. CAPE COD. Boston: Lit- 
tle, Brown & New York Graphic Society, 
1985. 230pp. $35. A huge, new coffee- 
table size edition beautifully illustrat- 
ed with photographs, maps, and drawings 
that almost, as the editor William F. 
Robinson hoped, gives the impression that 
Thoreau could have made them himself to 
illustrate his text. Robinson has dug 
up many wonderful photographs, particular- 
ly those of a Henry K. Cummings, added 
some of his own, along with the drawings 
of Amelia Watson and wins low Homer to 
make a really superb book. Our only 
quarrel is that a few (not many) of the 
photographs are not quite as clear as 
they might be. Robinson adds a table 
of directions for hiking on the Cape 
today where there has been little or no 
change since Thoreau 's day. (He does 
note however that one of the major 
changes is the return of the pine for- 
ests to the dunes.) This is an edition 
you will treasure and enjoy. 

The Same. Review. CAPE COD ORA- 
CLE. Aug. 1, 1985. 

The Same. Intro, by Robert Finch. 
Orleans, Mass.: Parnassus, 1984. 319pp. 

JOURNAL I [Princeton]. Review: 

SIERRA. March, 1985. 

Warren, Joyce W. "The Gender of American 
Individualism: Henry David Thoreau." in 


Rutgers, 1984. pp. 55-71. 
West, Michael. "Thoreau and the Language The- 
ories of the French Enlightenment." ELH, 51 

(Winter, 1984), 747-770. 
Williams, Donald. "Lady of the Woods: Some 

Correspondence of Fannie Hardy Eckstorm. 

COLBY LIBRARY QUART. March 1985. pp. 28-33. 
Wright, Mark T. "Addendum to Thoreau Story" 

CONCORD JOURNAL. Sept. 19, 1985. More on 

finding Thoreau' s flute book. 

We are indebted to the following for in- 
formation sent in for the bulletin: R.Borst, 
R. Chapman, A. Christianson,R.Dupree,M.Fenn, M. 
Grant, V. Ha lbert,W.Glick,H.Kiczka,V.Lottis, 
M. Meeri field, J. Michel, R.Michelf elder, G. Mon- 
tiero,M.Neussendorfer,R. Poland, C. Roof ,G. 
Ryan, H.Schon, E.Shaw, R.Thompson, F.Ziegler 
and J.Zuithoff. Please keep the secretary 
informed of items he has missed and new 
items as they appear. 


by Bradley P. Dean 

The authoritative text of Thoreau' s essay "Life 
without Principle" appears in Reform Papers, ed . 
Wendell Glick (Princeton; Princeton Univ, Press, 
1973), pp. 155-179. Recently, while generating re- 
constructions of the early "Life without Principle" 
lectures, I was obliged to work with this text in 
quite some detail, and I noticed three rather in- 
significant errors in the essay text and located the 
sources of two quotations used by Thoreau but which 
the editorial staff had been unable to locate prior 
to publication. This text of the essay will be stan- 
dard for many years to come, and since scholars will 
want the most accurate text possible, I present 
findings below. With the exception of my reference 
to the essay text in Reform Papers as "RP," the 
format and abbreviations employed in the additions 
below are the same as those employed in the textual 
apparatus to the essay (Reform Papers, pp. 374-377). 

Errors in the essay text: 

164.31-32 where-/ever) should read wher- /ever 
166.13 ' guacas ' ] should rea d "Guacas' 
177.36 Message,) should read Message. 

Additions to "Textual Notes" (pp. 374-375): 
161.15-17 "Greatness: Thoreau' s source for 
quotation is The Heetopades of Ve'eshnoo Sarma, 
in ji Series of Connected Fables , i nterspersed 
with Moral , Prudential , and Political Maxims , 
tr. Charles Wilkins (Bath, 1787), Ch . 2 Fable 1: 
"The story of the bull, the two jackals, and 
the lion." The quotation also appears in 
Thoreau' s Literary Notebook in the Library of 
Congress , ed . Kenneth Walter Cameron (Hart fold: 
Transcendental Books, 1964), p. 10. 

166.11 "In the dry season: Thoreau 1 s source 
for this quotation is "A Visit to the Indian 
Graves of Chiriqui," 

New York Daily Tribune, 29 September 1859, P . 6, 
cols. 1-2. 

166-13' "Guacas"; Emended from AM's and RP ' s 
"'guacas'" on authority of the source of the 
quotation and Thoreau's working draft in 
folder 20. 

Additions to "Table of Textual Variants" (p. 376): 
*166. 13-14 grave- / yards AM Y RP; " 
Graveyards folder 20. 

Addition to "Emendations of the Copy-Text" (p. 3770; 

166.13 'Guacas':} ' guacas ' AM RP 

Addition to "End-of-Line Hyphenation, List B" 
(p. 377): 

174.14 res-PRIVATA 

University of Connecticut 

by Gary Scharnhorst 

I wish to supplement the bibliographies of sec- 
ondary comment about Thoreau with sixteen overlook- 
ed items from American periodicals during the period 
between 1855 and 1895. The following list contains 
a significant contemporary notice of the "Cape Cod" 
essays; an overlooked obituary; several reviews of 
"Thoreau's posthumously-published works, including 
three initialed by the suffragist Henry B. Blackwell; 
and a favorable reference to Walden by the Reverend 
W.R. Alger, best known today for an earlier denunci- 
ation of "the hermit of Concord." 

1. "Pictor" tpseudo.}- "Massachusetts/(Correspondence 
of the Evening Post)." New York Evening Post . 13 
August 1855, 1:3. 

A brief paragraph coroborates the claim, usually 
traced to F. B. Sanborn, that serialization of the 
"Cape Cod" essays in Putnam's was adruptly dis- 
continued at least in part because Thoreau's tone 
irritated some residents of the region. The par- 
agraph merits quotation in full: "Mr. Thoreau's 
Residentsof Cape Cod, published in Putnam have 
given a good deal of offence to the people of 
that part of the country, who think that they are 
quite as high in the scale of civilization as 
their neighbors are. Their, wild and solitary state 
is no hindrance to their advance in all the graces 
and refinements of life. Barnstable county has 
furnished its full share of the intellect of 
Massachusetts, and not a few of the best merchants 
of Boston are from that quarter. They are proud 
of their origin, and keep up their connection with 
their birthplace." 
2. Joseph Palmer, M.D. "Association of the Alumni 
of Harvard College/Necrology of the Past Year." 
Boston Advertiser, 16 July 1862, 3:1-2. 

Genealogical and biographical sketch of "David 
Henry Thoreau" approximately 750 words: in length. 

3. fEdmund H.J S(ears). Review of Excursions. Month- 
ly Relieious Magazine. 30 (December 1863), 346-347. 

The essays "will be read by those who love 
Nature, and desire to see her through the eyes 
of one specially anointed as her priest and 
prophet. " 

4. ANON. "Thoreau and 'Thjs Maine Woods. '/The Attrac- 
tions of Nature." New York Evening Post, 22 August. 
1864, 1:1-2. 

Favorable notice of "Thoreau's last published 
work," which is "redolent of the genuine out- 
door fragrance of the pine and freshness of the 

mountain breeze." Includes excerpts totaling 
about 2500 words. 

5. (Edmund H.J S(ears) . Reveiw of Cape Cod. Monthly 
Religious Maeazine . 33 (May 1865), 319-320. 

The book "is thoroughly entertaining," though 
much of fThoreau'sJ description is caricature." 

6. ANON. Review of Cape Cod. Universalist Quarter- 
y, 22 (July 1865), 399. 

". . .fresh, original, a mirror of the shifting 
sands of the Cape and restless waves of the 
ocean, in full sympathy with Nature in all her 
moods . . ." 

7. (RufusO E(Ellis}. Review of Letters to Various 
Persons. Monthly Religious Magazine, 34 (September 
1865), 191. 

Criticizes Thoreau for "his real or affected 
indifference" to the Civil War. The same issue 
of this magazine contains several excerpts from 
the book under the title "Random Readings." 

8. ANON. Reviews of the A Week on the Concord and 
Merrimack Rivers, Walden, and The Maine Woods. 
Universalist Quarterly , 22 (October 1865), 


". . .such books as these, bringing the reader 
into fellowship with Nature, are profitable 
every way," though many of Thoreau's observa- 
tions "are shallow, egotistical, and imperti- 
nent . " 

9. ANON. Review of A Yankee in Canada,. Universa- 
list Quarterly , 23 (October 1866), 513. 

Brief, favorable notice of the work. 

10. ANON. "Thoreau's 'Yankee in Canada. "/A Charac- 
teristic Book — The Humors of Travel." New York 
Evening Post , 4 October 1866, 1:12. 

"No man of his generation more entirely escaped 
from the thraldom of conventionalities, or 
lived out more truly and freely his own life." 
Excerpts about 800 words from the book. 

11. CRufusJ E (El lis) . Review of A Yankee in Canada . 
Monthly Religious Magazine , 36 (November 1866), 

". . .pleasant and not uniasrructive and always 
hightoned . " 

12. ANON. Review of Thoreau the Poet -Naturalist 
by W. E. Channing, Boston Transcrip t, 7 October 
1863, 6:1. 

". . .a book readable as much for its quaint 
biographer as for its curious bits of biogra- 

13. H^enryJ B. Bflackwell). Review of Summer . 
Boston W oman' s Journal , 26 July 1884, p. 244. 

". . .a delightful book for quiet reading in 
the open air during summer vacation." 

14. William Rounseville Alger. "Everyday Philoso- 
phy." Boston Transcript , 6 August 1892, 4:4. 

Commends Thoreau's description of the "battle 
of the ants" in Walden . 

15. HCenry) B. B(lackwell). Review of Autumn. 
Boston Woman's Journal , 24 September 1892, P. 309. 

A work to be "welcomed by all the lovers of 
(Thoreau's ) unique and genuine genius." 

16. HCenryD B .B(lackwellJ . Review of Familiar 
Letters of David Thoreau. Boston Woman' s Journa l , 
6 July 1895, p. 211. 

". . .a deljghtful book . . ." 

University of Texas at Dallas 

by Julian Mason 

The most recent catalogue from Serendipity Books 
of Berkeley, CA (#43, July 1985) offers for sale 
Sinclair Lewis' copy of Walden (item 345, $900). It 
is an 1899 edition published by Crowell in the Handy 
Volume Classics series, with introduction by Charles 
G.D. Roberts. 

The catalogue entry is quite informative, point- 
ing out that the volume contains: 

(Lewis') signature in ink on the front 
endpaper, his marginal notes in pencil 
throughout, three pencilled notes by 
him, one on the great teachers of veg- 
etarianism, another on sexual contin- 
ence (over 50 words, in the margins 
opposite Thoreau's treatments of these 
subjects), and this interesting decla- 
ration on the front pastedown: "NY. Aug 
'07 / Read in noon hours of freedom 
from the semi-bondage of 'Tales'; on 
benches in Bryant Park; my Walden 2 
feet of bench, my pond a drinking foun- 
tain, my forest a few elms and maples, 
where sparrows twittered. S.L." 
The entry goes on to cite various sections of 
Mark Schorer's biography of Lewis concerning his 
reading of Walden and his claim for its influence 
on him: 

Time and again in later life, Sinclair 
Lewis claimed that Thoreau had been of 
all writers and thinkers "the major in- 
fluence on his own work" (Mark Schorer, 
769, 811, et passim . ) The present copy 
clears up a small mystery, as to just 
when Lewis read WALDEN. Under "1902," 
when Lewis was in high school and dis- 
cussing in his recently-begun diary 
all the books he was reading, Schorer 
remarks: "It is surprising that he 
neyer mentions either Thoreau or WALDEN, 
for in adult life,, again, he claimed 
for WALDEN a strong, formative influ^ 
ence." Schorer then quotes an adult 
Lewis looking back on his Minnesota 
boy-hood - "there was no book which 
had for me a more peculiar and literal 
enchantment than WALDEN" - and comments: 
"One must wonder whether . . .he was 
not imposing on the Minnesota years a 
maturity of taste and judgment that 
came only later." And under "1904," 
with Lewis in college and on a visit 
to Boston and Cambridge, Schorer tells 
us that Lewis "mentioned most of the 
great New England writers in his diary 
during these days, and read about a 
number of them, but again, there is no 
mention either of Thoreau or WALDEN, 
and no thought of a trip to Concord." 
Actually, Schorer never does discover 
when Lewis first read WALDEN. And al- 
though we do not know that either, at 
least not for a certainty, it j,s cer- 
tain that in August 1907, while living 
in New York and turning out one Trans - 
atlantic Tales , Sinclair Lewis would 
snatch the noon hours for reading what 
soon came to be the book with the great- 
est influence on his own writings 

Apparently, in Bryant Park Lewis was trying to 
follow Thoreau's admonitions that "each one be very 
careful to find out and pursue his own way" ( Walden . 
Princeton, p. 71) and "However mean your life is, 
meet and Luteit" (P. 328). Unfortunately, Lewis, 
Bryant, and even Thoreau would find it much more 
difficult to follow these in the Bryant Park of 
today . 

University of North Carolina at Charlotte 


by Edward C. Jacobs 

Thoreau, remarking in "The Pond in Winter" about 
the impossibility of accurately surveying on ice, 
puts forth a striking geological insight that an- 
ticipates by over fifty years a key idea associated 
with the Continental Drift theory of the early 
twentieth century, and later with the Plate Tecton- 
ics theory of the 1960's. Thoreau's idea deals with 
the undulation of the earth's crust: 

While I was surveying, the ice, which 
was sixteen inches thick, undulated , 
under a slight wind like water. It is 
well known that a level cannot be used 
on ice. At one rod from the shore its 
greatest fluctuation, when observed by 
means of a level on land directed to- 
ward a graduated staff on the ice, was 
three quarters of an inch, though the 
ice appeared firmly attached to the 
shore. It was probably greater in the 
middle. Who knows but if our instru- 
ments, were delicate enough we might 
detect an undulation in the crust of 
the earth? (Harding 221; italics mine) 
That the earth's upper crust, the lithosphere, 
does in fact undulate, in a fashion, like ice upon 
water, is a concept central to A/ Wegener's theory 
of Continental Drift. This theory posits the exis- 
tence of a supercontinent during the Paleozoic Age 
[called Pangea which evenually fragmented during the 
Mesozoic Age] into the smaller continents known to- 
day. Briefly put, these continental and oceanic mass- 
es "ride piggyback on the ...outer, cooler litho- 
sphere. Great fragments, or plates, of the litho- 
sphere appear to jostle and move over the softer, 
perhaps incipiently melted upper mantle of the Earth. 
A crude analogy is that of the movements of great 
plates of Arctic and Antarctic ice in response to the 
currents in the underlying ocean" (Lapedes 116) . 
"Crude analogy" nothwithstanding, the simile very 
clearly describes the same phenomenon of the undula- 
tion of the earth's crust that Thoreau speculated 
upon while surveying on Walden. 

The strongest support for the Continental Drift 
theory, once hotly debated, lies in the more re- 
cent and continuing geophysical investigations 
since the 1960's called Plate Tectonics. Similar 
to Continental Drift, Plate Tectonics posits "a 
simple model of the Earth in which a rigid outer 
shell 50-150km thick, the lithosphere . . .lie(s) 
above a hotter, weaker semiplastic asthenosphere 
, . . extendCing) . . . to a depth of 700km." The 
lithosphere is composed of a small number of large 
"rigid plates," which, as they move over the earth's 
surface, "grind and scrape against each other as 
they move independently like rafts of ice on water' 
(Lapedes 650). Were we to revise somewhat the word- 
ing of this analogy to read ". . .like rafts of 
ice on Walden Pond," we would not be distorting 
the import of the idea: the earth's crust of 

lithospheric plates does indeed undulate much as 
Thoreau speculated many years ago. 

Works Cited 

Harding, Walter, ed. The Variorum Walden : Henry 

Washington Square Press, 

David Thoreau. New York: 


Lapedes, D.N., ed . McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of the 
Geological Sciences. New York: McGraw-Hill Book 
Co., 1978. 

Louisana Tech University 

Margaret Neussendorfer tells us that in a 
letter of June 13, 1866 to Annie Fields now 
in the Boston Public Library (Ms. C. 1.11 (100)) 
Sophia Hawthorne mentions her desire to buy or 
hire for her brother Nathaniel the house near 
the Railroad Station built by Henry Thoreau' s 
father. She says it stands on a good acre of 
land with twenty-five apple trees and was lived 
in by the family and sold a while ago to a 
young Irishman by Mrs. Thoreau. 

The title of the title story of Joanna Russ ' s 
THE ZANZIBAR CAT (1983) is taken from the last 
chapter of WALDEN. 


Our apologies to Jack Schwartzman for in- 
advertently dropping his name as author of 
the eulogy of his dear friend Leonard Klein- 

A new adult condominium communityifn Reston, 
Va. is named "Thoreau Place." 

John Jakes in his 1982 novel NORTH AND SOUTH 
(Harcourt, 1982) speaks of Thoreau as "a radical 
. . .woodland anchorite" and quotes a line from 

feld in the summer bulletin and to Martin Doud WAL ? EN ' , „ , _„_„ „ , , _ 
na for misspelling his name on the article ™£/o5 ^hn, 3271 Hagdeburgerforth, Forster 
"Psychoanalyzing Henry: An Interview" in the r'esp'Bn^ing'wi^My A^rica^Sn^nSr^u^ H8 r 
spring bulletin. is 25 and writes fluent English. 

A great deal of excitement has been arous- A lead pencil label on exhibit recently at 
ed in Concord this summer by the discovery of the Houghton Library at Harvard University 
Thoreau's long missing flute book (in which reads, "J. Thoreau & Co's best quality lead 
he pressed many of his wildflowers) by Mark pencils, for drawing or writing, and all the 
Wright, a New Jersey high school teacher and purposes required of a good pencil. Concord, 
a member of the N.E.H. 1985 summer seminar in Mass." 

Concord, in the attic of Orchard House. It COLLECTOR'S CORNER: M & S Rare Books, Wes- 
is now being transferred to the Concord Free ton, Mass. 02193, is offering for sale thirty 
Public Library for safe keeping. pages of miscellaneous Thoreau manuscripts for 

According to the CONCORD JOURNAL for Aug. $62,500. It contains material from A WEEK, 
15, 1985 there was an attempted rape at WaldenMAINE WOODS, and the journal. . . . The Rare 
Pond in early August. Book Room, 125 Greenwich Ave., NYC 10014, of- 

According to the CONCORD JOURNAL for Aug. fers a one-inch tintype of Thoreau for $450. 
29, 1985, the selectmen of Lincoln, Mass., hav Jose Buscaglia, former artist in residence 
postponed a decision to reroute Route 126 at the Concord-Carlisle High School, has con- 
further back from Walden Pond. tributed to the school a mural of Thoreau, 

Hedwig Deuschle has presented a copy of her Emerson and Louisa May Alcott. 
undergraduate independent study thesis on "The "Thoreau Waiting for the River Ice to 
Secular Gospel in Literature and in the SciencBreak, " an etching by Joel Beckwith, has been 
of Man according to Thoreau, Whitman, and From issued by the Concord Art Association in an 
at the College of the Virgin Islands" (1976) tedition of one hundred copies, 
the Thoreau Society Archives. John Nickols of Concord tells us that the 

The Thoreau Society received a thousand _ late Lawrence A. Murray, a Concord land sur- 
dollars from the estate of the late Awona wil-veyor, told him that he often had to check 
ona Harrington of San Diego, Calif. many of Thoreau's Concord surveys in order 

According to the BOSTON GLOBE for June 16, to tie in his work with that of Thoreau and 
1985, Roberta Rubini Atti and David Robinson that he always found them to be "exceptionally 

accurate. " 

Commemorative bricks now pave winthrop Lane 
in downtown Boston, honoring prominent "Boston 
ians." Included is one for Thoreau! 

were recently married at the cairn site at 
Walden Pond. 

Hallmark now issues a greeting card with 
the words "It is only by forgetting yourself 
that you draw near to God. — Thoreau." 

The elementary school in Kirkland, Wash., 
is named "the Henry David Thoreau School" and 
its official mascot is the underfrog. 

featured a reproduction of the Dunshee Ambro- 

A feature program on Thoreau, entitled 
"The Green Henry" was broadcast on West 
German TV on Feb. 4, 1985. 

Five nuclear protesters on trial in 
Providence, R.I. for damaging missile 
tubes quoted Thoreau's "Civil Disobed- 

type of Thoreau and asked who could identify lt.ience" in their defense according to the 

John Graves, in GOODBYE TO A RIVER ( Knopf , 
1961), a book about the Brazos River in Texas, 
refers regularly to "Saint Henry David Thoreau. 1 

The CHICAGO TRIBUNE for April 1, 1985 (Note 
the date! ) claims that Rock stars Madonna and 
Prince have been offered major roles in a pilot 
for a TV sitcom loosely based on Henry David 
Thoreau's WALDEN. We hope very loosely.